6 Questions to Ask a Lawyer Before Hiring One
When hiring a lawyer, you’re entrusting them with your company’s most critical information.
Your attorney will simply make or break your business’ reputation and profitability. This makes hiring an attorney the most important process whenever you need to handle legal matters related to your business.
But how do you find the right business attorney?
You can get one by conducting a thorough interview with prospective attorneys. Below are some of the best questions to ask a lawyer.
Top Questions to Ask a Lawyer
Before hiring an attorney, ask the following questions:
1. Can I Interview You For Free?
Since choosing an attorney is a big decision, spending some time to get to know them is quite important. However, some lawyers may charge their normal hourly rate if you ask to interview them. Most of them do this because they’re some clients who take advantage of the vetting process to get free advice.
If you’re looking for a free consultation, it’s important to ask upfront to avoid any aggravations.
2. Who’s Going to Handle My Business?
Ask whether the attorney is an independent lawyer or part of a big firm. If they’re part of a firm, make sure that they’ll directly handle your legal matters and you won’t end up being assigned an intern.
3. Who’s Your Typical Client?
You need to know what type of clients your prospective lawyer represents and their respective business structures.
For instance, if you’re a sole proprietor with particular legal needs, an attorney who only represents corporations may not be the best choice for you.
4. What’s Your Specialty?
While you can easily find general practitioners, it’s always recommended to hire business lawyers for business legal matters.
And, if you find a suitable business lawyer, ask them about their specialty. Some lawyers are well-versed in tax law while others are good at crowdfunding laws. Specialty attorneys may charge a little bit more, but their expert knowledge and service should match the higher fees.
5. Are You Working With Clients Who Could Create Conflicts?
Ask whether your prospective lawyer is working for clients who are considered your competitors. If so, conflicts of interest may arise. What’s more, you may not be comfortable sharing crucial business information with a lawyer who represents your competitor.
6. What Happens if You Get Injured, Retire, or Die?
While it may seem uncomfortable to ask, a professional and client-centered attorney must have a practical plan set out to ensure that their clients are well taken care of in case they die or become incapacitated.
If you’re on a membership program with your attorney, ensure that your prospective lawyer has a network of other attorneys who can continue to provide you with legal services under that program.
Need to Talk to A Lawyer?
Knowing the questions to ask a lawyer will help you score the best practitioner for your business. It’s recommended to retain an attorney for all your business legal needs. Retaining a lawyer will mean that you get more personalized services and you won’t have to share your business information with many professionals over the years.
For more legal guidance on hiring an attorney, contact us at Manfred Sternberg and Associates.